The National Motor Museum at Beaulieu is set to transport visitors through time and space with the unveiling of a new temporary display featuring the most iconic vehicles from the beloved British sci-fi series, Doctor Who. From the sleek and stylish Bessie to the futuristic Whomobile and a menacing Dalek, this collection marks the 60th anniversary of the series and opened to visitors on November 23, 2023.
Heading the line-up is none other than Bessie, the Third Doctor’s trusty yellow roadster. Bessie’s first appearance was in Doctor Who and the Silurians in early 1970 and appeared regularly with the Third Doctor, played by Jon Pertwee. It also made single appearances in Fourth, Seventh, Eighth and Eleventh Doctor stories. Familiar to fans of the classic era, Bessie has become synonymous with the Doctor’s adventures.
Zooming in from the 1970s, the display presents the Whomobile, a custom-designed vehicle created for the Doctor by the brilliant minds at UNIT, the United Nations Intelligence Taskforce. A sleek blend of style and functionality, the Whomobile is a testament to the Doctor’s ability to traverse the cosmos. It made its first appearance in Invasion of the Dinosaurs broadcast in January and February 1974. The vehicle’s only other appearance was in Planet of the Spiders, which was the final adventure for Jon Pertwee’s Third Doctor and would see him regenerate as Tom Baker’s Fourth Doctor.
Finally, adding an element of menace to the display is an authentic Dalek, the iconic extraterrestrial villains that have been striking fear into the hearts of Doctor Who fans for decades. The Dalek on display appeared in all but one of the classic Doctor Who Dalek episodes. The National Motor Museum is thrilled to provide a rare opportunity for fans to witness the intricacies of Dalek design up close, as visitors will be able to come face to eyestalk with one of the Doctor’s most formidable foes.
Beaulieu’s Lord Montagu is an avid “Whovian.” He was a founder member of the Doctor Who Restoration Team, a group of fans instrumental in restoring old episodes recovered from various sources in less than perfect condition. He said, “I am delighted to be hosting this display of Doctor Who props in the program’s 60th anniversary year. I am sure it will bring great joy to our visitors and bring back memories of watching the Saturday evening episodes, perhaps for some from behind the sofa.”
The display can be seen until the end of February 2024 and is included in a general admission ticket to Beaulieu. This includes entry to the National Motor Museum, World of Top Gear, On Screen Cars, Palace House, Secret Army exhibition, Beaulieu Abbey, its grounds and gardens including adventure play area Little Beaulieu, plus unlimited rides on the Monorail and Veteran Bus.